Donor geography key predictor of giving: Nonprofit Federation show

Share this article:

WASHINGTON -- Customizing direct mail efforts by geography was the topic for representatives from Drakes Bay Fundraising, the American Lung Association, Thompson Habib Denison and the American Red Cross who gathered last week at the Direct Marketing Association's annual Nonprofit Federation conference.

The session began with discussions of segmentation philosophy and use of various segmentation formulas.

"We have found that where a donor lives is a major predictor of not only whether they will give, but how much they will give and how often," said Craig Zeltser of Thompson Habib.

Results and research revealed that different geographical regions show similar volume but have very different metrics. Further research showed that this variation runs parallel to the cost of living in different parts of the country.

Research also showed that if a $25 donor is a relatively high-dollar donor in one territory and a relatively low-dollar donor in another territory, then their response rates will differ.

When the American Lung Association added the ability to select by geographical variables to its database, the group's net revenue increased nationally.

"We implemented a hybrid program where a local P.O. box was used for regions and associations with extreme results," said Craig Finstad of the American Lung Association. "However, we are always continuing to test, test, test."

Never make assumptions in the nonprofit sector.

"Don't assume that local is better," Mr. Finstad said. "Consider geography as a primary select criteria and run your analysis by smaller, statistically significant areas, because geographic differences can affect copy, design, gift ask, return address and other aspects of your program."

Share this article:
You must be a registered member of Direct Marketing News to post a comment.

Sign up to our newsletters

Follow us on Twitter @dmnews

Latest Jobs:

More in News

DMA 2014 Kicks Off Under New Management

DMA 2014 Kicks Off Under New Management

Thomas Benton and Jane Berzan will preside over an event indicative of an association serving a wider array of industry segments.

De Quinto Tapped as Coke's Next CMO

De Quinto Tapped as Coke's Next CMO

The president of the company's Iberia Business Unit will take over from Joe Tripodi upon his retirement in February.

Customer Centricity Is Spurring Marketing-Tech Investments

Customer Centricity Is Spurring Marketing-Tech Investments

A majority of marketers rank customer satisfaction improvements as paramount in the technology investment decisions.